A Baal Predator and a brace of Razorbacks belonging to Tycho's Command Squad and the Sternguard Veterans. As it is the flashiest we'll have a look at the Baal Predator first:
The Baal is a great looking tank, just different enough from the normal Rhino. The heavier glacis plate (the sloped armour at the front) makes it look like it deserves the increase in armour value rather than just a Rhino with guns. Colour wise there wasn't a lot of choice! With all the tanks I have covered the painting before in more detail so I shall mostly look at details and decoration on these fellas. One thing I am very happy with is the honour scrolls on the front. The lettering was a test drive for a new one of those lovely Raphael brushes, this one was an 000 (I've got a 00000 but that will not get broken out very often!). With the added fine control I was able to put a lot more "twiddly bits" - technical term that - in the lettering and make it look a little more up market. One thing to be very careful of, as the size of brush gets smaller the reservoir of paint gets smaller and hence the drying time is reduced considerably. Get into the habit of regularly washing the brush mid job.
The transfer on the side is from the Baneblade sheet, something about the "archer" seemed to work with the assault cannon armed Baal Predator. Plus with the winged blood drops on the sponsons it seemed overkill to add more Angels iconography. The weathering on the flamer nozzles was an experiment for me, sequential washes of Gryphonne Sepia, Devlan Mud and Badab Black getting smaller and smaller area with each darker shade. I might still go back and stipple on some black to give a sootier feel. Not sure. If you look at the cannons you can also see carbon staining from the ejection valves. This was to represent the buildup of burnt cordite gases (or whatever the Imperium use) leaving the thousands of shell casings spraying from the weapon. One slightly odd thing on this model is that the Testors Dullcote has left a slightly textured surface that showed up in the drybrushed dirt. Might have to leave off the Dullcote and tolerate the weird looking gloss varnish patches around the transfers until finished.
Then the Sternguard's Razorback got some love. While finishing the Razorback I noticed that the icon was very, very similar to the 2nd Tactical squad. The difference between a skull on a black background and a skull on a navy blue background is quite subtle. I decided that they needed a more obvious marker that an elite unit was in transit. From the same Baneblade sheet, a wreathed skull was forthcoming. It looked Marine-ey enough and had the subtle "elite" look that that I was after.
By contrast I wanted the Command Squad's Rhino to have no doubt as to the quality of the troops within. I decided to freehand Captain Tycho's personal heraldry onto the squad panel of the Razorback - came out quite well I think! An oddity that you will see in these shots is that while the Dullcote is killing the gloss to the naked eye it is less effective vs. a camera lens. Might have to experiment with lighting.
While I was putting away the Baneblade transfer sheet I noticed one more design, a winged claw holding a sword. Aha! Thought I, if I trim that down I can have another chunk of Tycho heraldry on the door. A few freehand blood drops and the job was done.